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Nehemiah 1:1-4 (The Message)

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1 The memoirs of Nehemiah son of Hacaliah. 2 Hanani, one of my brothers, had just arrived from Judah with some fellow Jews. I asked them about the conditions among the Jews there who had survived the exile, and about Jerusalem. 3 They told me, "The exile survivors who are left there in the province are in bad shape. Conditions are appalling. The wall of Jerusalem is still rubble; the city gates are still cinders." 4 When I heard this, I sat down and wept. I mourned for days, fasting and praying before the God-of-Heaven.
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